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Shorepower issues

Discussion in 'Neptunus Yacht' started by Worthyvess, Aug 13, 2019.

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  1. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

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    One 1 cord, you'd have shorepower 1 on, the main on the left side on, and you have a choice on the right side, if you put it on inverter (also a charger) it will buffer startup loads a bit and you might not trip the shorepower. Looks like you should have shorepower cord 1 plugged in, if only using 1 shorecord.

    L1+L2 current need to be kept under 50 amps on one cord. At the dock I'd run 1 chiller in the winter on Neptunus'es and it would keep up no problem in South Florida. Summer time you could run off of one chiller but when it's mid-day and 92F outside 1 chiller has trouble keeping up so interior temps might creep up 1-2F during peak heat but can be done. If you haven't had your chillers cleaned recently, have them cleaned as when they get dirty they use more amperage.

    Does your shorecord have the factory glenndenning plug on it where it plugs into land? You can tell because the rubber boot it is clearly 1 molded assembly to the cord?
  2. rtrafford

    rtrafford Senior Member

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    Honestly do not understand your perspective of this issue. The isolation is precisely intended to separate the grounding of the vessel from the grounding of the shore. Not the neutral conductor.

    Taken directly from Charles Marine website:

    "When properly installed, Charles Marine Isolation Transformers will electrically isolate the AC shore power from the boat's AC power system. The boat's electrical system and the grounding conductor are not actually connected to the shore-side power. There is no direct electrical connection between earth-grounded shore AC power and the onboard electrical system. The shore ground is connected to a shield that is wound between the primary (shore) and the secondary (boat) transformer winding. The connection of this grounding wire only to the shield of the transformer isolates the boat's AC electrical system from shore. "

    and from a Boat US article, two of the top internet search results on the topic:

    "Most of us know how important the green ground shorepower wire is. It carries fault current (electricity that's going somewhere it's not supposed to, like when shorepower shorts against a metal case onboard) back to shore where it can't hurt anyone.

    But marina shorepower systems may be less than reliable. Due to long-term corrosion or improper installation, the ground wires are sometimes not properly connected, meaning you (and nearby swimmers) are not protected from a fault if the AC shorepower shorts into the DC system. This could happen because of a problem in any AC/DC appliance, such as a battery charger. If that happens, any fault current is going to follow a path all through the boat's DC ground and bonding system, which is connected to the engine and underwater fittings, such as thru-hulls and prop shafts. Because leaking current always searches for a way back to its source (in this case, the marina's shorepower system ashore), leaking current will exit the boat and head toward shore.
    "
  3. rtrafford

    rtrafford Senior Member

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    My head went here, too. I'm just not really clear of the scope of the trouble he's having. Agreed, that I've seen a dirty heat exchanger on a chiller pulling 5-6 additional amps.
  4. Capt Ralph

    Capt Ralph Senior Member

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    Look into the 12 or 24kw install manuals schematics from the same site.

    Where do you think fault current goes if there is no green wire connect to shore service?

    BTW, Owners never know, Leaking A/C & Chiller compressors can leak ACv fault current.
    With these new shore power service breakers (ELCI) that trip constantly for some boats, we are finding this is more common that not.
    Last edited: Oct 28, 2019
  5. chesapeake46

    chesapeake46 Senior Member

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    Or jump onto a neighboring vessel with a good ground/bond system to shore power

    At the Source, on shore, at the main service, the neutral ( grounded conductor )and ground ( grounding conductor )are bonded together. They are common only at this location if wired correctly. ( not in the pedestal or any sub panels )
    There is a driven ground rod at this point.
    It can be attached to the transformer secondary or in the main service panel, both are acceptable, but only one location.
    And only one location that the ground & neutral are terminated together, at the main.
    Sometimes the water is a better return path for fault current than the system ground.
    It may try to return through the water/earth and to the driven ground back to the shore power transformer source.

    The shore power cord for an isolation transformer is the A-phase and B-phase and a ground.
    The ground is be bonded to the isolation core.
    This protects against a ground fault up to the isolation transformer only and would not be tied into the boat ground/bond system.
    If the A or B phase fails within the turns of the transformer, it will fault to the core, or phase to phase & the fault current will travel back up the shore power cord, through the system towards it's source, building current and tripping the pedestal breaker, ideally.
    The neutral from shore power is unnecessary because you are creating a New System which creates it own neutral.

    The secondary side of the isolation transformer creates it's own, new system.
    The neutral and ground are bonded at the transformer or the main panel only.
    They are not common in any way with the shore power ground.

    The bonding system and neutral of the boat are common only with the new system.
    isolated from the shore system.
    If there is a GROUND FAULT the over current travels the ground/bonding system back to the source, the isolation transformer.
    The ground fault current on an isolated system has no reference to the shore power source and ignores it.

    If the ground conductors are open somewhere or heavily corroded, the ground fault current will attempt to get back to the source any way possible. which MAY mean it travels through the sea water from one fitting to another.

    Heavily corroded ground/bond wires also slow the reaction time of the over current device, usually a breaker.
    Slower breaker time can cause the current to really build and start letting the smoke out of appliances or cables.

    also when people start mixing neutrals and grounds out in the system, then the return current from your appliance will not stay on the insulated neutral, but some of it will travel on the ground/bond system.
    This is bad.

    The ground system should only have current on it in the event of a fault. The bonding portion of the system collects minor ( but can be detrimental ) stray currents on the system.
    The bonding side of the system is supposed to make everything attached to it the same potential.
    All equal.

    This so the engine block cannot hold a 120 volt charge from a faulty block heater and knock you silly when you touch the block and, say, a copper water line. All of the metal, non current carrying parts are the same potential and bonded back to the new source.

    The stray or goofy currents from poorly wired neighboring boats will ignore your system because it has nothing in common with the neighbors system.
  6. Capt Ralph

    Capt Ralph Senior Member

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    Not quite sure of what all this means my friend. I'm sure you put a lot into it, Can you condense it to simple logic?
    I can only guess that you have never cleaned or serviced ACv leaking boat bottoms in a marina.
    People have died from these stray currents when a boat was not properly tied to green wire dock service or had improperly installed devices.
  7. Worthy vessel

    Worthy vessel New Member

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    OK
    Had a marine electrician on boat today.
    Everything should work with one 50 amp cord if not drawing more than 50 amps.
    We shut off all power draws on the vessel and asked the one cord to handle one chiller and one zone AC.
    We put on the air handler and when the compressor was turned on it tripped the circuit. Neptunus and my electrician think it could be a power surge at start-up and are suggesting a “ soft start” unit be installed.
    My question is if I use a “Y” adaptor to connect my two -3 wire 50 amp power cords to a single 50 amp shore inlet would that work?
    I am trying to make my vessel fit into more marinas that might only offer one 50 amp outlet.
  8. Worthy vessel

    Worthy vessel New Member

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    PS. The boat has an isolation transformer on line one.
  9. Worthy vessel

    Worthy vessel New Member

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    The shore end is not factory
  10. Capt Ralph

    Capt Ralph Senior Member

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    Bad connects, bad plug pins, undersized wires, bad breakers, poor connections at buss bars, poor connects in transfer switch, and more can cause an over current breaker trip.
    Also, bad connections in the shore power service tower.

    I'd find and fix the problem vs trying to cover it up.
  11. Capt Ralph

    Capt Ralph Senior Member

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    Did you try the second shore service cord?
  12. bayoubud

    bayoubud Senior Member

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    If the one chiller will run on the generator it should run on 50 amp shore power. Yes, switch cords....
  13. Capt Ralph

    Capt Ralph Senior Member

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    If it runs on the gen set, the issue would be from the breaker, thru the cord to the service tower.
    I can thing of at least 6 trouble points.
  14. bayoubud

    bayoubud Senior Member

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    Should have said good 50 amp shore power, all is good on the gen. You mentioned a list of items that should be checked before adding $oft $tarts.
  15. Worthy vessel

    Worthy vessel New Member

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    Update
    Tried using only line 1 with the third chiller only on (the one most outboard) and it worked.
    Don't know why?
  16. Capt Ralph

    Capt Ralph Senior Member

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    Then we may be pointing to a bad connection or wire somewhere.
  17. Capt Ralph

    Capt Ralph Senior Member

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    Got another question; Are your #1 & 2 chiller compressors over charged?

    Oh heck, now I'm really stretching my mind, weak start caps.
    Send the condensing station part number, Caps are cheap.
  18. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

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    Is the third chiller newer? I am guessing so, since Neptunus only installed 2 chillers from the factory on these boats. A/C compressors will usually pull more amps at start up as they age. Soft starts will definitely help.
  19. Worthy vessel

    Worthy vessel New Member

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    I believe all 3 chillers are new and were replaced together.
  20. bayoubud

    bayoubud Senior Member

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    Home ac tech switched to larger start caps on home ac's for backup gen to handle ac start up loads, it worked.